Outbreak of lumpy skin disease in cattle hits East Nawalparasi farmersEighteen cows have died of the disease in the district over the past two months, officials said.
Lumpy skin disease, a viral disease that affects cattle, has been spreading like an epidemic in East Nawalparasi.
As many as 18 cows died of lumpy skin disease in the district over the past two months, according to the Veterinary Hospital and Livestock Service Expert Centre. More than 900 cattle were infected with the viral disease. Veterinarians warn that hundreds of cattle in the district are at high risk of contracting the disease.
The disease has been spreading in East Nawalparasi since mid-February, according to Rishabh Guragain, chief of the Veterinary Hospital and Livestock Service Expert Centre. “The disease was reported in 42 wards of five local units in the district,” he said. “Madhyabindu and Kawasoti municipalities are hardest hit by the outbreak.”
The disease was reported in cow farms of all 13 wards in Madhyabindu, eight wards in Kawasoti, 12 wards in Gaidakot, five wards in Binayi Tribeni and four wards in Hupsekot, Guragain said.
Hybrid cattle, mainly Jersey cows, are prone to lumpy skin disease, which is transmitted by blood-sucking insects like flies, mosquitoes and ticks. It causes fever, nodules on the skin, swelling of limbs, among other conditions, in the cattle. Death rate caused by lumpy skin disease is 2.7 percent in the district, according to Guragain.
The cattle farmers in the district have been hugely affected due to the outbreak. They complain that the government has not taken any effective measures to control the disease in East Nawalparasi.
“The government does not pay much attention to the outbreak of the disease,” said Ram Prasad Tiwari, a cattle farmer in Kawasoti Ward 15. “The veterinarians suggest we maintain sanitation in the sheds to minimise the impact of the disease.”
The infected cows should be kept in isolation to protect other cattle from the disease. According to the farmers, the infected cows give very little milk and it takes three to six months to fully recover from the disease. “Cattle farmers are incurring huge losses,” Tiwari said.
According to the Veterinary Hospital and Livestock Service Expert Centre, production of approximately 3,100 litres of milk has decreased per day in East Nawalparasi due to the outbreak.
According to veterinarian Buddhi Deuja, lumpy skin disease is highly contagious. “The cows give only a little milk after they are infected with the disease. The cattle farmers are hugely affected,” said Deuja. He said that oxen and buffaloes can also be infected with the disease but their death rate is very low.
It is estimated that there are 80,000 to 100,000 cattle and buffaloes in East Nawalparasi.